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Inner Sanctum

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Inner Sanctum

Publication date 1948
Publisher M.R.S. Pictures Inc.


An atmospheric little noir starring Charles Russell and Mary Beth Hughes. Fritz Leiber, Sr. (father of the famous author) has a cameo as a seer or psychic.


"You're very pretty ... when those lips aren't moving."

(Yes, it's noir. See the Wikipedia entry and this.)

The IMDB entry is here.

This print seems to be complete and may be of higher quality than the one already in the Archive. You can load the mpeg2 file into DVDAuthorGUI (a free program) and create a DVD to watch on your television.


Reviewer: katperrr - favoritefavorite - May 7, 2014
Subject: Inner Sanctum
Sorry, just wasn't that enthralled with this one. But don't take my word for it, apparently everyone else enjoyed it.
Reviewer: porterville - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 25, 2013
Subject: "Inner Sanctum" Is Good Viewing
I was unable to finish viewing the second half of this fine movie a couple of years ago, but was now able to see it from start to finish. A good plot (need to follow each scene in order to make sense of it) and performances. Mary Beth Hughes was introduced in one scene in the first half of the film and not seen again until the second half. A good low budget film from the late 1940's. The title of the movie was taken from the radio program of the time.
Reviewer: The_Master_Cylinder - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 29, 2011
Subject: One of the few
One of the few movies I've watched where I wish the kid would get killed. :-(
Reviewer: Jonnie King - favoritefavoritefavorite - May 23, 2011
Mary Beth Hughes ALWAYS one of my favorites ! She and Phyllis Brooks both "did time" in "Charlie Chan" films...and both were B-Movie Hotties ! And this "Inner Sanctum" film is a good example of what she does best.

Of course it's low-budget, of course the plot is sometimes confusing, of course the kid sees stuff he shouldn't oughtta...but who cares ? When Mary Beth Hughes is on-screen bitching, doing dishes, falling for the wrong guy (again), and looking as hot-as-ever, the film picks up steam and eventually closes out...just as the "Inner Sanctum" Radio Shows did: leaving you wondering if it WAS "real", or, all just a bad dream.

And, let's you realize (again) that Mary Beth Hughes should have gotten some solid "A-List" roles...because she really was a very good Actress.
Reviewer: billbarstad - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 22, 2011
Subject: A Fine Film
Sometimes she's good, though most often bad, sometimes sweet, sometimes a brat, but Mary Beth Hughes is always the young blond bombshell who has seen it all. She's great here, along with the rest of the ensemble cast. I've seen this before, and enjoyed seeing it again. Loved the use of the prescient old man. Fate incarnate. It adds a final chill.

I downloaded the 395MB AVI file, Video quality was good, the audio was fine.
Reviewer: splue - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 19, 2011
Subject: thoroughly reviewed
Trapped by watta in a town full of nasty folks & a bored girl is looking for a reason 2 get thru this bleak existence----- it's a typical Splue situation. Does the girl even care if he is douchebag deluxe? Will he get away before she gets really PMSey? well U will hafta watch it instead of watching thees review!!! Does this dude just keep moaning # whining forevah like Charlie Sheen?

This is noir, & Lindsay Lohan is a vampire.

Makeup by Paul Stanhope
Reviewer: rclo - favoritefavoritefavorite - May 19, 2011
Subject: Yes, It's Film Noir
Murder, a witness (or is he), trapped by high water in a small town full of busybodies and an opportunistic girl looking for a way out: it's a typical film noir scenarion. Does the witness reveal what he knows before the killer silences him? Do the busybodies uncover the secret? Does the girl even care if he is guilty of murder? Will he get away before the noose tightens?

One by one, the suspicions mount among the locals. What will happen?
Reviewer: Dr Feel Rotten - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 15, 2011
Subject: Film noir ground hog day
It makes ya wonder..does this old guy just keep telling the same broad the same story forever? When he runs is Mike waiting again hiding from mother?
And where did he get that snazzy beanie with the propellers? I really wanted one of those when i was a kid, but they were kind of out of style by then..
He probably wore it hoping he could just fly away from such a worry wart of a mom. My mom was the type who would have paid us kids to go get lost in the woods, but there was nobody out there to hurt us except other mean kids in the neighborhood.
Good movie and WAS a film noir movie. Just because there were no detectives doesn't disqualify it.
Reviewer: radinbc - favoritefavorite - December 1, 2010
Subject: No Noir Here
If this is noir, then Santa Claus is a vampire. There are darker stories in the Hardy Boys detective books. While this alone wouldn't cause me to give the film a low rating, it's aggravating that the "mystery" set up at the very beginning of the movie is not explained to any degree of satisfaction. That it should be is not an unreasonable expectation for a film of this style and vintage.
Reviewer: 1897 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - November 20, 2010
Subject: A Small Gem That Shines Brighter Than Many Of Those Larger
I am very glad to have watched this. Although quite short, it didn't feel like it needed to be any longer, which is a compliment in itself. I always find that I enjoy these short B noir treasures in the public domain more than many A films of the genre. Gilda comes to mind.

I highly recommend this picture, even if you don't delve into this type of film.
Reviewer: Ella Greggs - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - December 25, 2009
Subject: A Taut, Dark Tale - Worthy of Its Radio Show Namesake
Much like the old 1930s radio show of the same name, "Inner Sanctum" offers a taut, dark tale of lies and murder, tinged with just a touch of the paranormal. Charles Russell acquits himself very well as the handsome stranger with a murderous secret hiding out at the local boarding house. Mary Beth Hughes plays one icy ice-blonde, but just how far will she go to protect him? Roscoe Ates is reasonably effective as the boy who knew too much, but his cloying, annoying acting (sadly typical of child actors in this period) is the film's main drawback. Five stars nonetheless for this well-told, well-paced and suspenseful film. Note that the Archive description is misleading -- the film is atmospheric, but the only thing 'noir' about it is the lighting, with many night shots and action played in the shadows.
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